Examine 700 years of trusted, historical medical research
Founded in 1518 by a Royal Charter from King Henry VIII, the Royal College of Physicians of London is a professional membership body for physicians, with 34,000 members and fellows across the globe. It is the leading body for physicians in the United Kingdom and internationally, and the oldest medical college in England. Organization members work to achieve their collective vision by influencing the way that healthcare is designed and delivered, promoting good health and leading the prevention of ill health across all communities, as well as supporting physicians to fulfill their potential.
The Wiley Digital Archives: Royal College of Physicians collection brings relevant, rare and unique historical materials to researchers, students and educators across a variety of interdisciplinary fields and departments. The archive reflects the history and development of modern Western medicine, while documenting the interactions of the medical community between religious sects, monarchies, political systems and the general public. There is a good deal of information related to the establishment of medical practice standards and medical education, and to the extension and growth of the medical disciplines into the specialized fields of practice as we understand them today.
Library of John Dee
John Dee (1527–1609) was one of Tudor England’s most extraordinary and enigmatic figures – a Renaissance polymath, with interests in almost all branches of learning. He served Elizabeth I at court, advised navigators on trade routes to the ‘New World’, travelled throughout Europe and studied ancient history, astronomy, cryptography and mathematics. He is also known for his passion for mystical subjects, including astrology, alchemy and the world of angels.
World Health Survey (19th C Questionnaires)
The RCP archives contain the records of an ambitious effort to catalog standardized information from British colonies, protectorates, embassies, settlements or trading outposts throughout the British Empire for information around disease, health, and other vital statistics. This collection provides insights into key data points such as mortality rates, diets, agriculture, trade, and general health for a vast portion of the world in the early 19th century.
Early Medical Textbooks
The RCP played a central role in determining the education guidelines and qualifications for physicians, working on both curricula and textbooks. The textbooks and associated material in the RCP archive illuminate the shifting practices, theories, and priorities of the medical field over 5 centuries, and the early textbooks in particular show some of the great leaps forward in medical knowledge which necessitated substantial revisions to existing practices. Nearly all are annotated, and show that these textbooks were living things, and not simply static rules and practices for students to accept and put into use.
- Development of Mental Health
- History of Medicine
- History of the Royal College of Physicians
- Regulation, Law, Policy & Control
- Medical Humanities
- Medieval & Early Modern Texts
- Non-Western Medicine
- Anatomical Studies
- World Health
- Vaccinations & the History of Pharmacology
- Evolution & Nomenclature of Diseases & Medical Treatment
- Public Health & Health Culture
- Military Medicine & Practice
- Early Medical Textbooks & Education
& Much More
- Committee Records
- Domestic Recipe & Medical Manuals
- Grants, Charters & Statutes
- Illustrations, Sketches & Drawings
- Personal Papers
- Medical Textbooks
- Treatment Records
- Surveys & Questionnaires
& Various Ephemera
Look Inside the Archive
A sample of the type of materials that can be found in the archive collection.